Crash Symbols is delightfully twee. On ‘Clubhouse Split’ there’s a true sense of pure joy. Songs on here sound completely giddy. Whether the more traditional pop route is taken or something more experimental in nature, the result is the same: happiness rules. There are varying styles within these four different artists. In spite of their differences they all mesh together in a perfect way. Emotionally they are connected to one another. Stylistically too they possess similarities with heavy synthesizer and drum machine use.
Emily Reo begins with ‘Peach’. A dusty drum machine keeps the rhythm as ‘Peach’ goes into colorful playful sweeps. Aspects of Emily Reo’s work is highly reminiscent of Beach House, particularly on her track ‘Metal’ which has elements of Beach House including organ, far away vocals, and even the rhythm. This is one of the sweeter artists. ‘Creep Date’ Yohuna’s first track, shows she takes a more rock based approach, almost slacker like in its sound. Her other track is considerably more ambient. MoonLasso’s ‘Vibrasonics’ is one of the most dance-friendly songs on the entire collection with other song ‘Skies All Around’ acting as a more ambient piece. Brown Bread separates herself into equally compelling pieces: her first piece ‘Sister’ is quite experimental. On her second piece ‘Moths’ things are weighted down with a stomping beat and organ.
Overall Clubhouse Split is an optimistic collection of pieces. Each one of them possesses the sunny happiness that makes for good pop music.
“Proposed by lo-fi recorder and pop auteur Emily Reo, the Clubhouse Split collects songs from four similarly active female musicians, enlisting Johanne Swanson, aka Yohuna; Rebecca Doerfer, aka Brown Bread; and Malee Bringardner, aka MoonLasso. Though each is animated by their own unique projects, the impetus for the Clubhouse Split came from a mostly independent discovery and appreciation of each other’s music, the final gaps in familiarity being filled as each musician accepted in succession Reo’s invitation to collaborate on a split cassette. Their music is elegant, elaborately realized, and fully apprehended - each has been towing their own line for years at the heart of an expanding “post-colonial” music economy (no stuffed-shirt labels for these ladies).
Though the whole of human history is difficult to perceive for ‘most’ humans, because female voices are so thoroughly undocumented prior to recent centuries, tension in the form of radically opposite self-conceptualizations leaves thinkers of different genders designing their ideal self according to rules that sometimes don’t translate. That isn’t to say that women don’t have role models, just that we live in the throes of a protracted realignment. Progress as a species is the pace of our collective re-investment in the integrity of transcendent principles - in the face of an undesired state, we conceive of an ideal and (ideally) progress toward it. These four women have made it their work to model positivity and strength in the pursuit of a ‘public’ creativity, brooking no compromise and allowing their sincerity to play out across their respective bodies of work.
In the spirit of good will and basic arithmetic, the Clubhouse split offers eight songs and four genuine exemplars for anyone cognizant. If you include the packaging designers, that total raises to six; much thanks to artist Kaley Dickinson and designer Liz Pavlovic for their contributions.”